Seminar: dienstags, wöchentlich, 9:15 – 10:45 GWZ 5-116
Beginn: 2.4.2019
Prüfungsleistung: Projektarbeit

Pierre Bourdieu is one of the major theorists and empirical researchers in contemporary sociological thought and a wide-ranging scholar of the 20th century. He exercised a profound influence on the critical debates about culture and power in the social sciences and humanities, as well as beyond academia. His signature themes of cultural, social and symbolic forms of capital, field, habitus, symbolic violence, and symbolic domination, furthermore, his advocacy of scholarly reflexivity grant scholars with powerful tools for methodologically sophisticated and theoretically grounded critical thought. A large number of scholars rely on the massive scope of Bourdieu’s intellectual terrain to explore key debates in the social sciences, for instance, the complex relationship between social structure and individual action. Nevertheless, these discussions are considerably challenging as they reveal a decent amount of interpretations and critical assessment of Bourdieu’s mode of sociological inquiry.
The goal of this seminar, as the title suggests, is to think with Bourdieu in order to explore and critically discuss his sociology of symbolic power that addresses the relations between culture, social structure, and action. In terms of organization, the seminar is threefold – locating, understanding and engaging. We will begin our thinking with locating Bourdieu in the light of theories of Durkheim, Marx, and Weber in the view to Bourdieu’s central concepts, i.e., capital, habitus, field, and symbolic power. After locating, in the second part of the seminar, we will explore Bourdieu’s field studies of religion, academia, and art. Thus, with these empirical cases, we will come to an understanding of Bourdieu’s methodological and theoretical questions as well. The last part of the seminar aims at engaging in critical supplementary readings of Bourdieu’s approach.
Semester: ST 2019